Review: Chaffin’s Barn has stormy hit in 'Singing in the Rain'

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Ironically, Chaffin’s Barn Theatre opened the 1920s comedy “Singing in the Rain” on a very stormy night, but the slightly damp audience’s spirits were soon lifted with the delightfully funny musical on Hollywood movies facing the transition of “The Talkies.”

However, one dance number did get a few of them wet again, as the star of the show, Matt Moran, playing the star of the play, Don Lockwood, dances and sings “Singing in the Rain.” Moran, delightfully love consumed, recreates the famous Gene Kelly dance number, complete with umbrella and rain — real rain — on stage. The stage was filled with rain from above, as Moran joyfully skipped, danced and tapped through rain puddles, kicking up moisture as he went.

This classic show truly becomes a great time machine, complete with a multimedia screen, as the audience goes back to the 1920s when talkies were the rage and actors with bad voices were in trouble. Unfortunately, Don Lockwood’s romantic screen partner, Lina Lamont, played hysterically by Jenna Pryor, complete with Jean Harlow bleached blonde hair, was plagued with one hideous squeaky voice.

Lina believes she’s great and that Don loves her in real life, even though he calls her scum and worse to her face (especially in their silent love scenes), trying to get her to understand that he really does not care.

Don has a girlfriend, an unknown actress, Kathy Seldon, played by Kelsey Brodeur, whose beautiful looks and voice only add to their delightful duets, like “Would You.” The lovers have to constantly overcome Lina’s spiteful intrusions to break them up, as Lina also tries to save her career.

Don and Kathy are supported in their endeavors, with Don’s good friend, Cosmo Brown, played by Curtis Reed, also brilliantly tap dancing up a storm, especially in his solo “Make ‘Em Laugh” number.

Chaffin native Jenny Norris directed a charming, well-thought-out production, along with her very professional production team.

The ensemble cast is excellent and does some great tap routines, as all turned a rainy night into a sheer delight.

The Barn also provides a delicious homemade buffet for those who wish dinner and a movie. Even the waiters are part of the show when it comes time to sing their very original song to those celebrating birthdays and anniversaries.

For more information, go to chaffinsbarntheatre.com or call 615-646-9977. The show runs until Nov. 30.

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